Each year, homeowners in the United States spend $5 Million treating and repairing their homes for termite related damage. It seems like an unbelievable amount of money, but when you learn more about the incredible persistence of these pests you begin to understand how they are able to do such damage in homes without termite control.
For a single termite to destroy a home would take thousands of years, but unfortunately for us, termites don’t live alone. Termites live in colonies like ants and bees, and their colonies generally contain somewhere between sixty thousand and one million termites. You heard that correctly. That means if you have an active termite infestation in your home there may be up to one million termites living behind the walls of your house. Their colonies are able to grow so massive because termite queens can lay thousands of eggs in a single day. It’s easy to imagine how quickly a colony could double and triple in size.
These massive termite colonies aren’t just taking up residence in your home for the fun of it. They’re there for the food and a lot of it. It’s true that termites eat wood, but more specifically they’re after cellulose which is a component of wood. Cellulose is also a component in cardboard, fabric, and drywall. Even if you live in a cinder block house with very few wooden components there are plenty of things for termites to eat.
One more critical piece of information that every homeowner should know about termites is that they eat constantly. 24 hours a day, 7 days a week termites are munching away at the wood, drywall, and other cellulose-rich materials in your home. Without professional termite control, you can see how a very large, very productive colony could get out of hand very quickly. Here is a timeline of how much damage a termite colony can do in a home that is not protected with termite control
24-Hours Without Termite Control
Understanding the power of a mature termite colony is key to learning how to protect your home from it. Research shows that very large termite colonies can eat up to a pound of wood every single day. One pound of wood doesn’t sound like a lot, but if you stretch that out over a month we’re looking at around 30 pounds worth of wood loss to your home. That’s the weight of a toddler. Unfortunately, because termites tend to hide behind your walls, you’re not likely to catch them within the first days or weeks of an infestation. As you can see, every day counts in a home without termite control.
5 Months Without Termite Control
Whether your home is constructed entirely from wood or is made of concrete block or stucco, chances are the framing that makes up your walls, ceilings, and floors are made of wood. Behind the drywall of most modern homes is a grid made up of studs. These vertical studs are made from 2 by 4-inch pieces of lumber. A mature termite colony can destroy a single 2 by 4-inch stud in a period of 5 months.
3 Years Without termite Control
It takes approximately three years for a homeowner to begin seeing termite damage in their home. Some common signs of termite damage are wood that sounds hollow, buckling floors, piles of termite pellets or wings, and damaged drywall. Within the first 3 years of a termite infestation, the colony will have managed to do extensive damage to an untreated home.
8 Years Without Termite Control
If your home has sustained a large termite colony for a period of 8 years without professional pest control, it’s safe to say that all of the wooden elements in the home would be destroyed. Damage like this would be highly difficult and very expensive to repair, and it would likely make the home dangerous for inhabitants. By this point, the homeowner or resident is well aware of the infestation and unfortunately missed out on prime opportunities for professional termite control.
As homeowners ourselves, we know how frightening the thought of termites destroying your home can be. We share all of this with you, not to make you afraid, but as a cautionary tale of how bad things can get in a home without termite control. Each year that passes seems to go by more quickly than the last, and 8 years can pass in the blink of an eye. Don’t let the next 8 years pass without protecting your home from a potential termite infestation.
Termites are highly destructive pests, but they are nothing to be afraid of. As with any pest control efforts, the best termite control strategy is to nip your infestation in the bud. For more information about protecting your home and property from termites, contact us today. We’ll happily offer you a free consultation.